Arsa da Riom, Bild/Photo: Fundaziun Origen, Riom

The Fire of Riom

Not only Rome experienced a legendary fire (64 AD), but the village of Riom (canton of Graubünden) also burnt down almost entirely eighteen centuries later, and with it, its historic houses, municipal archives and ancient streets. The Riom fire is deeply engraved in the collective memory.

This village fire, which broke out on 5 March 1864, is the subject of a theatre performance by the Fundaziun Origen on an open-air stage in the village. The setting offers a beautiful view over the broad valley. The theatre play recounts the village’s demise, rapid reconstruction, the belief in a better future and the inhabitants’ pioneering spirit and solidarity.

Riom, June 2023

The open-air theatre play Arsa da Riom (Fire of Riom) takes the audience on a journey through the history of Riom. A theatre miniature takes place in the afternoon and recounts the new building plans after the fire.

As a reference to the great solidarity following the village fire, the organisers cook a rich soup on all performance days and tell stories from the chronicles of the 19th century and a series of guided tours and lectures on the history and future of Riom round off the programme.

The temporary theater in Riom. Photos: Admill Kuyler

An exclusive preview of the open-air theatre for a young audience (16 to 25 years old) will take place on Friday, 23 June 2023.

Other performance dates: 24, 25, 29 and 30 June, 6, 8, 9, 26, 27, 28, 29 and 30 July, time: 9 pm.

The Fundaziun Origen also invites to the final musical performances at the Julierturm on the Julier Pass (2 284 m). Clau Scherrer, the long-time conductor of Origen, celebrates the melancholy of farewell in works by Rachmaninov, embedded in the warm, wooden acoustics of the Julierturm, one of the best and at least the highest in the Alps.

The Julierturm has been the venue for numerous performances of theatre, ballet, music and lectures since 2017. The tower will be demolished at the beginning of September 2023, as already agreed in 2017.

Source and further information: Fundaziun Origen